Line Dancing with Seniors
“Staying Alive” blasts through the stereo system as a group of ladies shake, shuffle and kick-ball-change to the beat. The ten seniors are led by Matt Langdon, the program co-ordinator at Second Mile Club in Kensington Gardens. The club has been providing programming for seniors since 1937. They provide an adult day program, caregiver support and daily seniors’ recreation. Their mandate is to “provide accessible, welcoming facilities that offer various activities to promote social and intellectual participation.” The class appeals to all levels – from beginner to advanced. The average age is 75.
The tone is casual and fun – they wear low heels or trainers. They dip, turn and stomp – to everything from “Walkin’ After Midnight” to “Putting on the Ritz” to “Boot Scootin’ Boogie”. Langdon has been running the program at this location for the past year. In addition to line dancing, Second Mile Club members also learn painting, knitting, bingo & mahjong. They also do regular yuan ji, fitness training, and watch movies. Tucked just above Kensington Market, the prime location of the club lends itself to a diverse and eclectic group of participants.
Line dancing is simple enough. It is reminiscent of folk dancing and involves lining up and dancing as a group doing steps in unison (as opposed to partner dancing). Different derivations were suited to disco (the electric slide) and latin (the macarena). Line dancing is repetitive and easy to learn. Langdon is good-natured and guides the beginners. “This one’s kind of like a vine step… watch me,” he says, as he demonstrates the steps for Jimmy Buffett’s classic drinking anthem, Margaritaville.
The Second Mile Club is open to all seniors who want to get out of their house, meet new people, and take part in some fun activities.
Check out Matt’s Second Mile Club programming on Learn Buffet or call him at 416-963-9546